Recently, Josh Trank, the director of the 2015 Fantastic Four reboot, published a review of his own movie on Letterboxd, a site where the general public is free to publish their rants about films.
Trank offers some of the pros and cons of the final product that was released, which left countless moviegoers in a distasteful, unappreciative mood. The film displays signs of a lack of development in plot and character, among other things, and in retrospect, Trank’s returned to Fantastic Four with fresh eyes and a keen examination.
The basis for the pic itself was not one which spurred excellent creativity. The making of the 2015 reboot was executed in order for 20th Century Fox to maintain the rights to the characters. Otherwise, they would have very quickly reverted back to Marvel. Thus, the concept of the movie was engendered out of business necessity, not out of an endeavor to tell a good story.
They just had to make a movie in a timely fashion and that, coupled with the host of reshoots the studio required and various other behind the scenes troubles resulted in a disjointed shipwreck of a film.
Yesterday, Trank gave his rant on Fantastic Four, which is delivered in a rather personal and begrudging tone. “The movie is ALRIGHT,” he says. “I was expecting it to be much worse than it was.”
He goes on:
Everyone in the film is a great actor, and overall there is a movie in there, somewhere. And that cast deserves to be in THAT movie. Everyone who worked on Fant4stic clearly wanted to be making THAT movie. But…. ultimately… It wasn’t.
Did I make that movie they deserved to be in? To be honest? I can’t tell. What I can tell: is there are TWO different movies in one movie competing to be that movie. Is there a #releasethetrankcut?
Trank is certainly right about the cast. All of them are highly talented: Miles Teller of Divergent, Kate Mara from The Martian, Michael B. Jordan – who would go on to be the MCU’s Killmonger – and Toby Kebbell who’s landed a slew of terrific roles in recent years.
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Despite the fine acting though, the movie still came out a failure. Trank feels like he let the actors down, though he does have an excuse, in part, for why the pic wasn’t on top of its game. And it’s a pretty humbling remark.
“Doesn’t matter. I’m not Zack Snyder. Zack Snyder is a storied, iconic, legendary filmmaker who has been knocking it out of the f*cking park since I was in high school. Me? Then? I was 29 years old, making my 2nd film, in a situation more complicated than anything a 2nd time filmmaker should’ve walked into. That said… I don’t regret any of it.”
I was 29 years old, making my 2nd film, in a situation more complicated than anything a 2nd time filmmaker should’ve walked into.
Trank admits that his inexperience was likely a disadvantage to the production team and, as a result, the final product. Nevertheless, the director closes his piece of criticism on a note of renewed pride. The movie certainly could have been better, but as Trank writes:
I don’t regret any of it…It’s part of me. And I just hope Peyton Reed makes the next Fantastic Four and crushes it.
These are certainly some interesting insights from Trank and it’s nice to see him offer a refreshing take on what went wrong with Fantastic Four. We can only hope at this stage that the titular team will eventually get the reboot they deserve once Marvel Studios gets to work on their take on the iconic heroes.